Wet And Wild Surprise

By | March 19, 2011

Wet And WildI went out on an errand this afternoon and was greeted by a worried Suze on my return.

“There’s something in the loft again.” She said.

Expecting another close encounter with a squirrel I popped the loft hatch and climbed the ladder. All was silent, nothing stirred up there. Either the intruder had left or Suze had heard the neighbours searching through their wardrobes in their attic bedroom that adjoins our unconverted loft. Or so I thought …

An hour later we were setting down to dinner when we heard a scratching from our fireplace. It’s a gas fire that looks like a pile of burning driftwood when it’s lit. The whole thing sits on a slab that looks like granite and in a stainless steel box in the chimney breast. The flu is massive because of the ventilation required so when it’s not in use I have a wooden bung pushed up to stop debris dropping down and rolling onto the carpet.

Whatever was in there couldn’t get out.

Twenty minutes later the lounge was transformed, covered in dust sheets and much of the furniture arranged to funnel the anticipated dirty and pissed-off squirrel out through the hall and through the front door.

Luckily the flu can be unscrewed relatively easily and I unscrewed it, donning gauntlets before removing the last screw for the anticipated encounter with an angry tree rat. Nothing emerged when I dropped the flu funnel out and I stood guard while Suze got me a torch.

What I saw in the beam from the Mag-Lite was a very frightened duck!

It took a while of quiet waiting for her to emerge, every time I tried to approach her she backed away into a corner. The top of the steel box in which the fire sits has lots of sharp edges and I didn’t want to have her hurt herself if she thrashed around.

When she did effectively fall out onto the dust sheets I tried to grab her but she flew off and collided with the large window at the back of our lounge. I was able to grab her and pop her in a file archive storage box to calm down.

So, the last couple of hours have been spent rescuing and cleaning up a lovely little female mallard. She’s been drinking lots of water, but not eaten yet and is currently is in a pet carrier with some water and a variety of food. It was too late and dark to release her by the time we’d done. Hopefully she’ll be OK in the morning and we can let her go.